Mets and Phillies wrapped up their third consecutive extra-inning ballgame against each other

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For the first time in the history between the Phillies and Mets, the two clubs have played three consecutive extra-inning games against each other. Friday and Saturday’s affairs each went 14 innings with the Phillies winning the former 6-5 and the Mets winning the latter 5-4. Sunday’s game was knotted at two apiece through 10 innings, but an 11th-inning Lucas Duda two-run home run helped the Mets escape with a 4-3 victory.

The last time the Phillies played three consecutive extra inning games against one team was July 13-14 last season. The Phillies split a doubleheader on the 13th, winning the first half in 11 innings and losing the second half in 13, then winning in 10 innings the following day. The Mets played three consecutive extra-inning affairs against the Astros between July 31 and August 2. All three went ten innings; the Mets lost the first game 3-2, won the second 8-2, and lost the third 4-3.

Adding yet more intrigue, the series was initially scheduled to be a four-game set with both teams getting an off-day after Sunday’s finale, but because a game between the Mets and Phillies was rained out on April 30, they will play a fifth consecutive game on Monday. If Monday’s game goes nine regulation innings, the two clubs will have played 57 consecutive innings against each other.

Jayson Stark, eat your heart out.

Video: Angels use eight pitchers in spring training no-hitter

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Who says no-hitters can’t be just as fun when they happen during spring training?

Angels’ right-hander Bud Norris delivered two perfect innings on Friday night, paving the way for an eight-pitcher no-hitter against the Mariners at Tempe Diablo Stadium. Jose Alvarez, Cam Bedrosian, Andrew Bailey, Austin Adams, Drew Gagnon and Justin Anderson each filed a hitless inning of their own, leaving right-hander Abel De Los Santos to close out the ninth inning with just three pitches — and three game-saving plays by the defense.

Of course, it didn’t hurt that the Angels were facing a bevy of Mariners’ backups, rather than their starting lineup. In fact, Seattle’s lineup featured just two starting players — outfielder Leonys Martin and shortstop Jean Segura — while the majority of their everyday position players took on the Royals in a 4-3 win elsewhere in the Cactus League. The Mariners managed to reach base twice, first on catcher interference in the fourth inning, then on a four-pitch walk in the sixth, spoiling the Angels’ chances of turning their combined no-hitter into a combined perfect game.

Still, whether it’s executed in spring training or the regular season, against an All-Star lineup or one comprised of minor leaguers, a no-hitter is a no-hitter. The team’s eight-pitcher effort marked the first spring training no-no the Angels had completed since 1996, when they took on the Giants in a 15-0 showdown. Unfortunately for the 1996 squad, their regular season ended with a 70-91 record, good for last place in the AL West. Perhaps this no-hitter will prove a better omen for the coming season.

Tanner Scheppers leaves Cactus League game with lower core injury

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Rangers’ bullpen candidate Tanner Scheppers left Friday’s Cactus League game with pain in his “lower half,” according to reports by Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. The specifics of the right-hander’s injury have yet to be determined, but he was accompanied by the athletic trainer when he exited the game and is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Saturday.

Scheppers, 30, has a long history of elbow and knee injuries. He missed all but 8 2/3 innings of the 2016 season after undergoing a procedure to repair torn articular cartilage in his left knee. While he appeared healthy enough through his first seven appearances this spring, he failed to impress with three runs, five walks and six strikeouts over 7 2/3 innings with the club.

Should Scheppers find himself on the disabled list for another lengthy stay, MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan speculates that his absence could clear some room in the bullpen for Rule 5 draft pick and fellow righty Mike Hauschild. Hauschild, 27, has dealt seven runs, five walks and 15 strikeouts through 17 1/3 innings in camp.